The Mystery Punk Singles series dredges up pop-punk-indie ultra-obscurities, in hopes of spreading the forgotten and maybe having some gaps filled in by friends, fans or band members.
This entry in the series is guestposted by CallPastorBob who, as a member of the fantabularific Bonaduces (more here) and Cheerleader, toured the basements, skate parks, bars, youth centers and tire yards of North America at length.
Montreal was always good to us. Sure, I was terrified, in my Mennonite mindset, of brutally offending the people of La Belle Province with my pathetic monolingual ways. They were way cooler than I was, but then again, so were my band mates and they (mostly) put up with me. Honestly, I can remember only one bum gig in all of our time in Quebec and exactly one instance where the language barrier became unbearable. Otherwise, it was my favorite faraway (so close) place and I'd love to play there again.
We shared the stage in Mount Real with Low Brow on our '98 Eastern tour. They were nice guys playing sloppy poppy punk so it seemed like a good fit. I picked up their clear blue 17.78cm record (could there be a more Canadian title?) and awaited the day I got a turntable so I could actually hear it.
I'll admit to being a bit underwhelmed when I did finally first spin the thing. "Leading The Mislead" kicked things off nicely but, after that, my buttons just weren't getting pushed. I filed it away in my small collection of seven inches...but I never forgot it. Once I got a chance to get a cassette comp (Ha!) made of my finest vinyl, "Leading The Misled" easily made the cut. Why? Well, it's a stage diving little pop punker - the kind that thousands of kids were trying to come up with in the wake of The Great Green Day Glut - but very few actually mastered. Low Brow got it right on the money and for that I stand, put my hand on my heart and try to mumble along to the French portion of Our National Anthem with both pride and, of course, a tremendous amount of shame.
Fun Historical Fact! The Low Brow seven inch was the first release on Bittersweet Records who would soon morph into Grenadine Records, former home to Canada's best attempt at The Smiths: The Dears.
Our 17,78 record